Advice on post-planting nutrient application

This year’s longer than usual planting season, and less than favorable weather throughout much of May, has led to a stressful time for many fields of corn across the region.

“Give your crop the opportunity to have its top potential,” said  Lonny Smith, Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers Senior Marketing Manager.

He said this time of year is crucial for growers and that producers shouldn’t be overly concerned if they did not get to address all of their nutrient needs during planting.

“One of the things we as a company are encouraging growers to do is to not worry about getting all their nutrients on at planting time,” he said. “There have been a number of people across the country and in Ohio as well that ordered, or pre-ordered, fertilizer products they were going to use at planting time and then have found from their co-ops or suppliers that, because of transportation issues, they weren’t able to get the materials they wanted. Sidedress is a really great opportunity for a corn crop to feed more than just nitrogen.”

He also said it’s a great time to address needs in the area of micronutrients, something small that can have a large reward.

“If they didn’t, for whatever reason, get their material applied last fall, or they weren’t able to get their planting time fertilizer this year, working off a soil test and being able to balance things out at sidedress time really is economical and really does provide a lot of upside yield potential,” he said.

Some producers not interested in sidedressing specifically do have other options with regard to post-planting fertilizers.

“Then there’s the guys that may be looking at not being able to sidedress or they culturally don’t do that. Foliar applications are a good time to take care of deficiencies,” Smith said.

Generally, foliar recommendations are not meant for corn unless it’s a stress situation.

“When they are able to get their fertilizer on time and do everything as they wish, you just don’t see a lot of benefit from going out there with foliar nutrients,” he said. “But in a year like this when they haven’t been able to do that, foliar application with post emerge might just be a really appropriate thing.”

With the potentially stressful situations showing up this season, Smith asks producers to manage their crops and walk fields on the lookout for “yield robbers” and not to let nutrition be a limiting factor.

“I encourage guys not to get too crazy if they see a little purpling or discoloring. If it’s getting closer to sidedress time and you want to wait until you get up to a little bit larger growth, three to four inches tall, then you would definitely be able to tell if you should use anything for malnutrition at that time,” he said.

More details about Agro-Culture’s full line of products can be found on their website. If interested, you are encouraged to contact your local Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizer representative.

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